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Found another mistake in my spreadsheet...
Old 12-05-2007, 01:07 AM   #1
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Found another mistake in my spreadsheet...

Sometimes I think about being a CFP. Days like today encourage me not to.

I just found another mistake in my home-brewed "when can I retire?" spreadsheet.

The good news is that my new "gold" FIRE date is age 50.28, on September 4, 2019. This is two years earlier than before.

The bad news is now I don't trust my spreadsheet and am going to have to go over it to make sure I'm doing everything else correctly.

2Cor521
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Old 12-05-2007, 11:40 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SecondCor521 View Post
Sometimes I think about being a CFP. Days like today encourage me not to.

I just found another mistake in my home-brewed "when can I retire?" spreadsheet.

The good news is that my new "gold" FIRE date is age 50.28, on September 4, 2019. This is two years earlier than before.

The bad news is now I don't trust my spreadsheet and am going to have to go over it to make sure I'm doing everything else correctly.

2Cor521
I'm only concerned if you used to work at Enron in the accounting area..........
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Old 12-05-2007, 12:28 PM   #3
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Well, since it will impact the rest of your life, I would check it closely.
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Old 12-05-2007, 12:41 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SecondCor521 View Post
Sometimes I think about being a CFP. Days like today encourage me not to.

I just found another mistake in my home-brewed "when can I retire?" spreadsheet.

The good news is that my new "gold" FIRE date is age 50.28, on September 4, 2019. This is two years earlier than before.

The bad news is now I don't trust my spreadsheet and am going to have to go over it to make sure I'm doing everything else correctly.

2Cor521
The fact your spreadsheet "mistake" delayed your ER 2 years simply means you will be a conservative CFP. One who builds in extra safety margins. That is a good thing.
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Old 12-05-2007, 12:43 PM   #5
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FWIW, the bigger mistakes (don't ask me how I know) get fewer and more obvious the close you get to FIRE.
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Old 12-05-2007, 02:57 PM   #6
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What, you don't have that .28 figured out to the exact minute What kind of planner are you


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Old 12-05-2007, 03:39 PM   #7
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I say check it again add some fudge factors to get you to FIRE tomorrow....
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Old 12-05-2007, 04:39 PM   #8
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I should have retired 10 years ago but I couldn't sustain 25% average returns for the past 20 years............
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Old 12-06-2007, 01:10 PM   #9
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I'm only concerned if you used to work at Enron in the accounting area..........
Nope, never worked for them. Although if you have problems with a laser printer from a large, well-known manufacturer of same, I may be at fault.

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Well, since it will impact the rest of your life, I would check it closely.
Yup, plan to. The error in this case revolved around my child support payments, which drop off over time as my kids become emancipated. Since this is a significant part of my budget, I have to do several things:

1. Model the drop off in my expenses over time.
2. Figure out the NPV of my future CS expenses at any given month in the future.
3. Model the increased savings I will be able to do (in theory, anyway) as my CS payments drop.

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The fact your spreadsheet "mistake" delayed your ER 2 years simply means you will be a conservative CFP. One who builds in extra safety margins. That is a good thing.
Yeah, I'm nearly as conservative as Want2Retire, although I plan on spending the same in retirement, not more ;-).

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FWIW, the bigger mistakes (don't ask me how I know) get fewer and more obvious the close you get to FIRE.
Oh dear. Sounds like the voice of experience ;-).

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What, you don't have that .28 figured out to the exact minute What kind of planner are you
-- My spreadsheet tells me I can retire in the month in which my expenses hit 4% of my FIRE assets, so I only have it narrowed down to the month. You'll notice that all my retirement dates I've ever posted here are an integral number of months away from the day I posted them ;-).

I figure (a) within a month is close enough for now for planning purposes; things are very likely going to happen to change that number anyway, and (b) when I get closer I suspect that other factors may come into play -- I may be forced to retire a little early, or I may stay a little later. Too early to tell.

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I say check it again add some fudge factors to get you to FIRE tomorrow....
I actually did a little sensitivity analysis and discovered that if I manage to maintain 0% inflation in my current expenses, increase my 401(k) savings rate from 20% to 25%, and retire on a 5% withdrawal rate, that I could retire at 46. I don't think I can at this point reasonably expect to do any better than that...

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I should have retired 10 years ago but I couldn't sustain 25% average returns for the past 20 years............
Wait, I thought you were a guru?!?

2Cor521
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Old 12-06-2007, 02:02 PM   #10
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Wait, I thought you were a guru?!?
2Cor521
Notice the screenname finance DUDE, NOt finance GURU...........
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Old 12-06-2007, 04:18 PM   #11
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Yup, fudge factors help. Ours is "how much we want to leave to the kids". We keep that number on the high side, and certainly aren't telling them! If things go south, we have their "retirement booster" to count on. Also, checking your calcs against firecalc and the myriad of others out there helps calm the mind. If yours, and most of the others, say "OK" then you're probably not im much danger.

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Old 12-06-2007, 08:36 PM   #12
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Ours is "how much we want to leave to the kids". We keep that number on the high side, and certainly aren't telling them!
One's heirs should never learn that the dear ol' folks are worth more dead than alive...
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Old 12-12-2007, 03:38 AM   #13
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I am a big believer in not exceeding the precision of the model. You don't have to be exact ... especially since you don't know when you are going to die (which can dramatically affect the results of any math). You just have to get in the ball park ... with a buffer ... This 'just in case' bucket should give you the ability to sleep at night. Good luck.
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